After all, there's no better way to move on than to look back. Few days ago, I asked some of you to drop by my ask.fm account and tell me some things that you think I need to change about myself. I intended to hear from you and before I posted that, I grounded myself to accept all the criticisms even how hurtful they may be. Here are the things that I received and I'll try my best to respond to them. Note that I am in no way trying to defend myself but just letting you hear my side of the story. Plus, I had some important realizations too, which might help you. Give my dama a try.
1. On fitting in
“You cut off people from your life so easily, as soon as you find new ones who you could, idk, blend in?”
-I guess all of us have problems about finding our own circle. We can deny this truth by saying that we don't really care or that we don't want conformity. But hello, even how much you refuse to be controlled by the people around you, you still are because you don't want to be alone for the rest of your life. I mean who wants to be, right? One way or another, you are gonna need to find people who you can be around and work things out even how messed up your life can be. I don't celebrate cliquish mentality but if that's what's gonna let you survive then I don't see any problem with that. What I have learned, though, is that even though you have a secured group of friends, you should not limit yourself from hanging out with them alone. Go out. Maintain friendship with old pals. And most importantly, remain friends with your true self.
2. On choices
“Tbh, paasa ka without you noticing it.”
-This one's weird! But okay, I'm gonna have a take on it. I guess I'm just naturally complicated. I can be really ironic, indecisive and even insensitive. I don't mean to make people hope for something that's not going to happen because I don't like someone to do that to me, too. That's just cruel. But let's be real here: I can't know what's inside people's minds or what people feel inside their hearts. I don't and I can't know everything and it's okay. However you know me, that's how I live my life. And If ever I stir up your emotions whenever I say or do something, I don't really think that that's my problem but yours. Take control, man! Or else tell me.
3. On being real
“You act like you are confident but you really are not. And you have to be because why not?”
-Fine, it's true that I lost more than 50% of my confidence this year. It was shattering to see it all go just like that, after I recall how much effort I exerted to gain it. It was only this year that I realized how something so important and private can be taken away from you. But nope, you can't blame anyone but yourself. It was my fault. I was the one who didn't stand up for herself when she felt offended. I was the one who didn't raise her hand when she had the perfect answer that can blow her professor's mind. I was the one who didn't comfort a friend when she knew that she needed to. It was all on me. Sometimes, you just got to do it. Just stop overthinking about what if's and just play the game. Because once the momentum is gone, you just sit there and see a perfect opportunity go to waste. You're left with more what if's, only more painful than the ones before.
4. On making friends
“You don’t open up. Maybe you’re just naturally quiet or shy. But some find it hard to make conversation with you.”
-I was raised being constantly reminded how the world can be so treacherous. I appreciate privacy. I have trust issues. I hate to be judged. It turns out I have completely been so hard on myself and on others as well. It's just hard to please everyone and I guess that's the biggest mistake that I have ever committed this year. And I think it's time to forget about the impression of other people about me. I'm going to live my life and I will not stop myself from doing something so groundbreaking just because I don't like people to hate me or say something behind my back. A friend once told me that it's okay to have people hating on something you do because it just proves that for once in your life, you fought for something important to you. And I believe that each one of us deserves to fight for something so improtant to our identity.
5. On trying hard
"Try hard mo to be famous, sobrang smart and successful."
-Okay, this is just absurd but it still hit me right through the most vulnerable part of my heart. I mean, seriously? What's wrong with trying so hard for things that you want in life? And yes, I want to be smarter than I am now because I don't think this can take me to wherever I desire to be. Yes, I also want to be successful and be happy. Yes, I want to be known for something that I can do best. And I know that you also have a fair share of desires that give you a reason to keep on going. I don't know with you, but I will keep these good desires alive. So that in times when my vision of a happy world is clouded by the cruelty of humanity, I can always pause and remember why I have a life that is so worthy to be lived and shared.
There will be a lot of things that I need to do in order to achieve that new-year-new-me tag. But I guess I don't really need a new me. I can never be new, because that would mean I'm going to throw away everything about my life just to create my ideal self. And honestly, no matter how 2015 sucked, I can't afford to do that because there will always be special people, dreams and memories that will make me grateful of how I have been given with this kind of life.
There will be a lot of escaping from comfort zones, taking risks, leaving expectations behind and more adventures that I am still about to find out. It's a challenge. 2016, bring it on.